Minneapolis passes $1 billion in construction permits

It’s another $1 billion year for construction in Minneapolis.

With three months left in 2015, the city blew past the 10-digit mark in construction permits for the fourth consecutive year.

Minneapolis passed the $1 billion mark on Sept. 11, and there are several large projects working their way through the city approval process, which officials expect will raise that number higher.

The news follows last year’s record-setting performance when Minneapolis doled out $2 billion in permits — largely aided by the Minnesota Vikings’ new home, U.S. Bank Stadium, and the nearby Wells Fargo & Co. office towers.

“We probably won’t hit $2 billion this year. It’s hard to tell what the final number will be at the end of the year,” said Rose Lindsay, spokeswoman for the city’s Planning Department.

Most of the stadium work was counted in last year’s total, but the Downtown East development continues to be a large piece of 2015. The two 17-story Wells Fargo buildings, at 550 and 600 S. 4th St., are the central feature of the project, pulling nearly $80 million in permits so far this year.

“It’s exciting to see the development around the stadium we expected come to life, creating sustainable, multiyear jobs and a vibrant downtown,” said Steve Poor, the city’s director of development services, in a statement.

A soon-to-be Embassy Suites in the historic Plymouth Building at 5th Street and Hennepin Avenue S. may be this year’s development dark horse, a project that has quietly emerged as a big spender. HRI Properties, the New Orleans-based developer heading the large project, pulled nearly $51 million in work permits, chipping away on the renovations without much public fanfare.

The new Xcel Energy headquarters building at 401 Nicollet Mall added $44 million, and the Portland Towers condo project at 740 Portland Av. added $38.7 million.

Much of the boom in the last four years can be attributed to pent-up demand created by the recession. Before 2012, Minneapolis hadn’t seen $1 billion in construction since 2000.

City officials anticipate that several large projects in the approval pipeline will be permitted in the coming weeks.

source: http://www.startribune.com/minneapolis-passes-1-billion-in-construction-permits/328912551/

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